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Old 04-16-2011, 11:34 AM
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Novice in T-400 mess...

I'll begin at the beginning, fitted a B&M Converter two years ago and had the TH400 freshened up at the same time, two years down the line Converter starts making noises and I get get Torque judder so I take my Chevy C10 off the road...Coverters gone bad! took the trans pan off and found a lot more gray silt than usuall in the bottom and a few other bits to boot.






No money for the same shop to go through the tranny again so I decide to dismantle & flush it out myself taking pics all the way...Now! I have never done this before and it's scary in there but i'm determed to fix this myself, I found damage to the Brown clutches and it's a givnen I need to replace them, but do not know what to ask for...quantity, name, size etc, and do I need to replace the steel ones as well?





The tangs on some of the steel plate's are different shapes and differently spaced aronund the edge...so do they need to go back in a specific orientation in the housing? the notches in the housing are all the same shape and spaceing.



And now I'm having trouble removing this piece, snap ring is out but it's won't slide out like the rest.



Thanks in advance.

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Old 04-16-2011, 11:57 AM
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You can get a complete, high quality rebuild/overhaul kit from that auction site we all know and love, and for a very reasonable price. There will be different levels of quality to components, you get what you pay for. And that brings us to the B and M converter; which was probably a "street" level performance unit. That, I'd stay away from! Get something with Torrington bearings instead of bushings. To me, it looks like the converter dust and wear took the rest of the trans with it. The steels in yours are'nt reusable, for the most part. Sometimes, good used ones can be tumbled in a stone tumbler used in machine shops IF they are not scored. A good overhaul kit will come with them, and a really good kit will also have the bands and bushings. Any Chiltons/Motors Manual should be able to direct you through the tear down and reassembly. I usually only do Glides, but have done TH400/TH350's before. Take your time, inspect everything for wear, and keep everything CLEAN. The lined plates engagement splines will engage by rotating the hubs with assembly. Prelube everything, and soak the lined plates in ATF prior to assembly. Watch the clutch setup clearances, usually .010 per lined plate is a good setting. YellowBullet.Com is a good site with experienced professionals to consult with if you have any questions, and "Crosley" on here, and there are always helpful. I've learned a LOT from them.
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Old 04-16-2011, 12:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by junior stocker
You can get a complete, high quality rebuild/overhaul kit from that auction site we all know and love, and for a very reasonable price. There will be different levels of quality to components, you get what you pay for. And that brings us to the B and M converter; which was probably a "street" level performance unit. That, I'd stay away from! Get something with Torrington bearings instead of bushings. To me, it looks like the converter dust and wear took the rest of the trans with it. The steels in yours are'nt reusable, for the most part. Sometimes, good used ones can be tumbled in a stone tumbler used in machine shops IF they are not scored. A good overhaul kit will come with them, and a really good kit will also have the bands and bushings. Any Chiltons/Motors Manual should be able to direct you through the tear down and reassembly. I usually only do Glides, but have done TH400/TH350's before. Take your time, inspect everything for wear, and keep everything CLEAN. The lined plates engagement splines will engage by rotating the hubs with assembly. Prelube everything, and soak the lined plates in ATF prior to assembly. Watch the clutch setup clearances, usually .010 per lined plate is a good setting. YellowBullet.Com is a good site with experienced professionals to consult with if you have any questions, and "Crosley" on here, and there are always helpful. I've learned a LOT from them.
Thanks stocker..but you will have to go easy with the tech terms, think of me as a virgin with no idea where to put it.

What do you mean, when you say..."The lined plates engagement splines will engage by rotating the hubs with assembly...what lined plates?
And if I just replace like for like, would I really need to know about .010 per lined plate? as I have no clue there either...sorry stocker.
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Old 04-16-2011, 07:59 PM
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The "tangs" on the plates with lining on them (the lining can be anything from paper to in some cases brass; usually kit's a metalic impregnated fibrous material is used in perf applications). The tangs line up with the splines on the hubs. Try and get the tangs lined up as good as you can, engage the first with the hub, turn/wiggle, push down lightly, and it'll drop to the next one. Keep doing that till they're all seated. Once that's done, check the total clearance with feeler gauges, and only a snap ring in place. There are different thickness steels to get the clearance right. Then take out the snap ring to finish the component assembly. That's why I say get a manual, it'll guide you along step by step, component by component. It's also important to "air check" your assemblies to make sure they're sealing correctly. There is also a sticky at the top of this forum by Jakeshoe on TH350 and TH400 transmissions. Most guys don't have a lot of specialized tools for trans work, I've made the ones I need for what I do. If you take your CLEAN case, extension housing, components, and pump assembly to a trans shop, they should do those R and R bushing replacements for you for a nominal fee, maybe even free. Stay away from cheap converters, unless it's a rebuilt stock unit for an essentially stock trans.

OOPS, I see the Jakeshoe stickies are gone again, anyone know if they're still available somewhere?
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Old 04-16-2011, 08:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by junior stocker
OOPS, I see the Jakeshoe stickies are gone again, anyone know if they're still available somewhere?
the information was moved to the Crankshaft Wiki. Clik on link at top of page = Tech Article Wiki, look for "transmission" section, clik on that
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Old 04-17-2011, 05:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by junior stocker
The "tangs" on the plates with lining on them (the lining can be anything from paper to in some cases brass; usually kit's a metalic impregnated fibrous material is used in perf applications). The tangs line up with the splines on the hubs. Try and get the tangs lined up as good as you can, engage the first with the hub, turn/wiggle, push down lightly, and it'll drop to the next one. Keep doing that till they're all seated. Once that's done, check the total clearance with feeler gauges, and only a snap ring in place. There are different thickness steels to get the clearance right. Then take out the snap ring to finish the component assembly. That's why I say get a manual, it'll guide you along step by step, component by component. It's also important to "air check" your assemblies to make sure they're sealing correctly. There is also a sticky at the top of this forum by Jakeshoe on TH350 and TH400 transmissions. Most guys don't have a lot of specialized tools for trans work, I've made the ones I need for what I do. If you take your CLEAN case, extension housing, components, and pump assembly to a trans shop, they should do those R and R bushing replacements for you for a nominal fee, maybe even free. Stay away from cheap converters, unless it's a rebuilt stock unit for an essentially stock trans.

OOPS, I see the Jakeshoe stickies are gone again, anyone know if they're still available somewhere?
Got a DVD coming and hopefully going to buy that ATSG Manual on ebay...Ron Sessions & his publishing house can poke it were the sun don't shine for the price it's going for. I understand now about the paper covered plates, but I still have concerns about the orientation of the steels...the tangs round the outside of them are all different, some are short some are long & some are sloped left some sloped right, some have a V grove in them while other tangs are spaced further apart, do they have a particular way of being droped into the casing? or is it just random?



Just for reference to my next question I have droped all the plates back into the housing so that you might be able to tell me from looking at the pic where the feeler gauge should be placed?



Thanks
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Old 04-17-2011, 06:49 AM
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The alignment of the steel plates does not matter. Some builders line up matching tabs, I have never seen a difference in decades of trans repair work.
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Old 04-17-2011, 07:42 AM
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Originally Posted by Crosley
The alignment of the steel plates does not matter. Some builders line up matching tabs, I have never seen a difference in decades of trans repair work.
Thanks Crosley...that was a worry, I will do this thing even if it kills me lol.
I have to say I find it more interesting than scary, i'll post updates as I go and hopefully the info in it will help others..or at least give them a good laugh

Anyone know where I should put my feeler gauge in the second pic?
Stocker, what is the R&R bushings you refer to?
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Old 04-17-2011, 07:47 AM
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R&R = remove and replace bushings as needed
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Old 04-17-2011, 12:32 PM
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Guys, how in the heck does this part come out? snap ring is off but it won't budge...I've been messing with it for an hour and it's driving me nuts.



Seems there is a snap ring behind it, and it looks like it's not on properly maybe that has something to do with it.

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Old 04-17-2011, 12:34 PM
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Your SECOND to last pic is the FORWARD clutch assembly that engages the DIRECT clutch assembly. You'll notice the grove for the snap ring, and just below that is a "STEP"; from the upper edge of the "stack of steels and plates, to the bottom of edge of the step is the area to measure. However, my Chilton 71 Edition just says to assemble the forward and direct clutch assemblies and air check them for engagement (mentions NOTHING ablout checking clearances). Not to precise, but probably acceptable for a stock rebuild. I would measure and juggle different thickness steels; 5 lined plates, so .050 clearance. Now understand this; I'm NOT a transmission expert, I don't do this for a living, I'm an X-RAY TECH (retired) who happens to do all his own automotive work I possibly can. Rebuilding transmissions started with my first Bracket car, then on to a front engine dragster, followed by a Super Comp rear engine dragster. Now I'm back to Classic Chevrolets due to 8 spinal surgeries. IF you have a library where you live, use it, they almost always have Chiltons-Motors Manuals, and other automotive related books. I have a 1959 Edition Motors Manual, a 1971 and 1976 edition Chiltons, and the library,less than a mile away, has far more than I do. Chiltons will take you step-by-step in disassembly, cleaning and checking clearances/tolerances, and reassembly procedures. The stickies on here (thanks to Crosley for directing us to where they are now) will help with modifications you may want to make. To me, the hardest part of rebuilding a trans is cleaning it, especially the outer case/extension housing. I use spray on oven cleaner for the really grungy ones, and Super Clean in the purple jug; Simple Green also works as it's less caustic to aluminum, but does'nt dissolve grime as good, and requires brushing. I wash the case/extension housing with hot water (hose connected directly to hot water outlet in the kitchen), and the air compressor/hose and nozzle to blow out the water left behind. Lots of solvent for component cleaning, and blown dry (try NOT to use rags). Assembly takes place on a clean sheet of cardboard. Vaseline and ATK for assembly; Vaseline holds the thrust bushings in place, the lined plates soaked in ATF, gears in planetaries get lubed with ATF. Everything gets cleaned in component order, dried, checked for damage/wear, lubed, reassemble componets, and clearances checked, air checked, and goes back into the case. I'm a little over detail oriented so I'm always rechecking things. When the trans is back together a spray bottle with solvent cleans the outside. The only things I usually paint are the tin covers (governor covers, pans, and the outer pump face), most guys don't do that, and some will just paint the entire trans. Since you have the trans torn down, it would be wise to use the better snap ring kit in the case. "TH400 transmission" search on E-Bay will get you all the stuff you need, and cheaper than even rebuilders get them at cost!
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Old 04-17-2011, 01:57 PM
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Great!! I see exactly where you mean stocker...Thanks.
I will indeed be accumulating some reading mater to help me through this process, got a DVD on ebay coming which apparently walks you through the rebuild so we'll see how good that is when it arrives, and the wiki that crosley put together is a great source also.
I have to say for me... taking on projects like this and tearing into my 454 started more as a case of needs must, because shop costs are just to high, if I were rich and lazy I'd leave it into the shop, but I'm neither, and the gratification I get from doing it myself anyway not to mention what I learn along the way....I love working on my Chevy.
I had a good look at those kits on Ebay, very tempting for the money my only concern is the quality...voice in my head keeps reminding me "if you pay peanuts you get monkeys".
This looks good;http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/GM-TH...Q5fAccessories
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Old 04-17-2011, 06:19 PM
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Great!! I see exactly where you mean stocker...Thanks.
I will indeed be accumulating some reading mater to help me through this process, got a DVD on ebay coming which apparently walks you through the rebuild so we'll see how good that is when it arrives, and the wiki that crosley put together is a great source also.
I have to say for me... taking on projects like this and tearing into my 454 started more as a case of needs must, because shop costs are just to high, if I were rich and lazy I'd leave it into the shop, but I'm neither, and the gratification I get from doing it myself anyway not to mention what I learn along the way....I love working on my Chevy.
I had a good look at those kits on Ebay, very tempting for the money my only concern is the quality...voice in my head keeps reminding me "if you pay peanuts you get monkeys".
This looks good;http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/GM-TH...Q5fAccessories

That kit's got good parts in it, though most guys don't go with the Kolene Steels (even the racers); I think price wise you can do even better. That's what I said earlier, the trans guys can't get these kits wholesale/jobber from their suppliers. The center support is held in place by a single bolt UNDER the valve body, did you remove that bolt? It's almost dead center in the case and RECESSED, so may be difficult to see at first. The valve body has to come off FIRST to access it. I just noticed you're in the UK; they might not have Chiltons-Motors Manuals over there.
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Old 04-17-2011, 06:36 PM
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Originally Posted by BBC
Great!! I see exactly where you mean stocker...Thanks.
I will indeed be accumulating some reading mater to help me through this process, got a DVD on ebay coming which apparently walks you through the rebuild so we'll see how good that is when it arrives, and the wiki that crosley put together is a great source also.
I have to say for me... taking on projects like this and tearing into my 454 started more as a case of needs must, because shop costs are just to high, if I were rich and lazy I'd leave it into the shop, but I'm neither, and the gratification I get from doing it myself anyway not to mention what I learn along the way....I love working on my Chevy.
I had a good look at those kits on Ebay, very tempting for the money my only concern is the quality...voice in my head keeps reminding me "if you pay peanuts you get monkeys".
This looks good;http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/GM-TH...Q5fAccessories

That kit's got good parts in it, though most guys don't go with the Kolene Steels (even the racers); I think price wise you can do even better. That's what I said earlier, the trans guys can't get these kits wholesale/jobber from their suppliers. The center support is held in place by a single bolt UNDER the valve body, did you remove that bolt? It's almost dead center in the case and RECESSED, so may be difficult to see at first. The valve body has to come off FIRST to access it. I just noticed you're in the UK; they might not have Chiltons-Motors Manuals over there. E-Bay kits # 280425217532 comes with everything, including bands, bushings, and a shift kit; # 350456345141 without a shift kit; # 320317948385 includes the better snap ring and shift kit (I'm sure snap ring is available separately, just not on E-Bay at the moment). All those are name brand parts ALTO, BORG WARNER, etc.
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Old 04-18-2011, 05:55 PM
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That kit's got good parts in it, though most guys don't go with the Kolene Steels (even the racers); I think price wise you can do even better. That's what I said earlier, the trans guys can't get these kits wholesale/jobber from their suppliers. The center support is held in place by a single bolt UNDER the valve body, did you remove that bolt? It's almost dead center in the case and RECESSED, so may be difficult to see at first. The valve body has to come off FIRST to access it. I just noticed you're in the UK; they might not have Chiltons-Motors Manuals over there. E-Bay kits # 280425217532 comes with everything, including bands, bushings, and a shift kit; # 350456345141 without a shift kit; # 320317948385 includes the better snap ring and shift kit (I'm sure snap ring is available separately, just not on E-Bay at the moment). All those are name brand parts ALTO, BORG WARNER, etc.

Your a pal stocker, I apreciate your advice with the kits on Ebay very much...I had no idea there was a bolt hiden away in the VB i'll take a look tomorow and get the rest stripped out then. There are a few American parts stores over here serving the classic car market they sell Chiltons and Haynes manuals, so I should be able to pick one up.

Cheers mate.
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